Big Tech faced yet another blow from the Department of Justice.
Originally reported by The Wall Street Journal, the DOJ sent letters to members of the congressional judiciary committees and asked them to support an antitrust bill that prevented Big Tech companies from showing favoritism to their own products.
“If enacted, we believe that this legislation has the potential to have a positive effect on dynamism in digital markets going forward. Our future global competitiveness depends on innovators and entrepreneurs having the ability to access markets free from dominant incumbents that impede innovation, competition, resiliency, and widespread prosperity,” Peter Hyun, the acting Assistant Attorney General, wrote according to The Hill.
The American Online Innovation and Choice Act would likely apply to Apple, Google, Amazon, and Meta and would prevent them from favoring their own products at the expense of other companies.
“Discriminatory conduct by dominant platforms can sap the rewards from other innovators and entrepreneurs, reducing the incentives for entrepreneurship and innovation,” the letter continued. “Even more importantly, the legislation may support the growth of new tech businesses adjacent to the platforms, which may ultimately pose a critically needed competitive check to the covered platforms themselves.”
Proponents of the legislation argued the act would level the playing field and promote free-market principles. The bill had bipartisan support: it was introduced by Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar and was also endorsed by Republican Senators Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley.
The Hill also reported that smaller tech companies like Yelp and Basecamp supported the bill.
Meanwhile, there were political concerns about potential conflicts of interest in votes on the bill as well.
Newsbusters reported earlier in the year that Sen. Chuck Schumer controlled the path of any antitrust bills as Senate Majority Leader, despite the fact that his daughters worked for Amazon and Facebook. This created a potential conflict of interest:
“Big Tech employees have proven before how leftist they are. Facebook employees orchestrated a movement demanding Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg censor then-President Donald Trump in 2020, for instance.
Open Secrets records revealed that for “all federal candidates,” by October 2020, both Facebook and Twitter gave over 90 percent of their political contributions to Democrats for the 2020 election cycle, particularly to then-presidential candidate Joe Biden. Hundreds of Amazon employees demanded the platform stop selling a book that challenged the woke left’s narratives on gender identity in July 2021.”
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